I went to see Maleficent in the cinema a couple of weeks ago, and it was incredible. I was totally mesmerised from start to finish - I am one of those people who gets ridiculously involved with whatever I'm watching, to the point that I react to every little moment, and I was in full swing with this one. Angelina Jolie was incredible. I am a fan of Jolie just as a person in general, the work she does for charity and for women worldwide is fantastic, but I've never had huge feelings about her one way or another in terms of her acting. She was phenomenal here though! The film is the story of Maleficent before the character you meet in "Sleeping Beauty", and is a brilliant twist on an old tale. If you haven't seen it yet, I'd definitely recommend checking it out - it's visually stunning, well written and total escapism!
Ahhh The Room. Emma had been telling me for ages that I needed to watch this cult classic and I just hadn't had the opportunity until a couple of weeks ago. I can tell you it was worth the wait!
This is undoubtedly one of the worst films that has ever been made, which is what makes it so utterly fantastic. The writing is appalling (the plot makes no sense whatsoever), and the direction is equally terrible - both are courtesy of actor/writer/director/producer Tommy Wiseau. And don't even get me started on the acting - there were literally tears rolling down my face I was laughing so much at some points. But this combination makes for brilliantly funny viewing, as you attempt to grasp on to any, minute strands of plot that are referred to more than once throughout the 99minute run time. In it's simplest form, The Room tells the story of an awkward love triangle between Johnny (played by Wiseau), his fiancee Lisa, and his best friend Mark. But it is so, so much more than that. It has cultivated such a following that the cast now tours around the globe discussing the film in panels, and introducing it at screenings, while it has inspired a book and a video game (according to wikipedia!). I can tell this is a film I will watch many times, and definitely suggest you check it out if ever you have the chance!
Eat Pray Love
I've been intrigued by Eat Pray Love for a while now, and with a free evening this week I settled down with a gigantic cup of tea and an obligatory bit of cake, to devour all two hours and twenty minutes of the movie adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert's memoir. Starring Julia Roberts, it tells Gilbert's personal journey to, for lack of a better phrase, find herself after a difficult divorce and equally unsuccessful rebound. She travels to Italy, and then on to India and finally Bali, and attempts to reshape her life, and her attitude to life, through a search for spiritual fulfilment, focusing solely on becoming happy alone before approaching any new relationships. It is a great story and I definitely walked away from it feeling inspired. I wonder if it could perhaps have been a little shorter, but if you don't mind a lengthy film then get on Netflix and give it a go.
I watched Tabloid a couple of months ago now and forgot to mention it in a previous I've Been Watching post. This documentary by Errol Morris looks into the bizarre story of Joyce McKinney, a young American woman who, in the 1970s, was accused of kidnapping her morman boyfriend in England, and raping him. The documentary is made up of clips from an in depth interview with Joyce about the events at the time, her subsequent arrest and the trauma she has suffered at the hands of the media ever since. It is a baffling story, and while the film portrays McKinney in a less than stable light, you leave it not having a clue what to believe. It is a scandalous story, and certainly makes for some interesting viewing.
I talked about Fargo in my last I've Been Watching post, but I need to mention it again. I cannot explain how good this show is, I really can't. It is absolutely insane, but the performances here are just spectacular (pay attention cast of The Room). Martin Freeman has just completely blown my mind in the past couple of episodes. His character, Lester, is (without giving anything away) a complex sort of person, and over the course of the past nine episodes his character progression has been amazing to watch. It is such an intense hour of television and the fact that I'm keeping up with it while it's still on TV instead of forgetting it's on and eventually waiting for it to appear on Netflix or for the DVD to come out shows you what high quality it is. It's definitely a TV highlight of the past couple of years for me.
24 - Live Another Day
I am a massive, massive fan of 24 - it's the show that really made me realise I wanted to study television at some point in my life, leading to the selection of my undergraduate degree course! I'll admit, I was sceptical when I heard that they were bringing out a twelve episode 'mini-series', when the entire format is based on the events taking place over twenty four hours. The moment I saw that ticking digital clock, and heard that oh-so-familiar soundtrack from Sean Callery, however, I was hooked. I'm just loving having Jack Bauer back, and having Kim Raver, one of my favourite actresses, back on screen is almost too much for me to cope with... #jackandaudreyforever. The storyline this season is just as dramatic as ever, with another terrorist threat for Jack to swoop in and save the world from; the only difference being that this series is set in London. Every episode leaves you with your heart in your mouth at least once and I can't wait to see how this pans out.
So that's it for this edition of I've Been Watching! What shows or movies have you been enjoying lately - you know I love a good TV or film recommendation!
Image Credits - all on my Pinterest board!